Bulgaria has made strides towards becoming the leaders of CBD in Europe, by becoming the first EU member state to authorize the free sale of a line of hemp-derived CBD products.
The products, which are produced by Kannaway, have been issued a “Free Certificate of Sale” which allows for free sale in open markets as well as exports. Kannaway is a subsidiary of Medical Marijuana Inc, a publicly traded cannabis company based in California. The certification was issued by the Bulgarian Food Safety Agency in conjunction with the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry.
Kannaway’s products are now authorized as being fully compliant with “relevant requirements of the Law on Foodstuffs of the Republic of Bulgaria and of Regulation (EC) No 852/2004 of European Parliament and the Council on the hygiene of foodstuffs.”
Table of Contents
Paving the way for other companies in the EU
While this does not mean that all CBD products are legal to sell, this authorization will surely pave the way for other companies eager to gain approval for sale in the EU amid murky regulations. This move may also give Bulgaria a market edge for European CBD sales, and distinguish them as industry leaders in an exciting new field.
Europe’s blossoming CBD industry was recently halted by the reclassification of CBD as a “novel food”, which includes any food products that were not widely consumed by humans in the European Union before May 1997, which is when the first regulation on a ‘novel food’ was enforced. Under these regulations, companies must apply for novel food certification from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), a process which can take up to 18 months.
Despite the fact that the UK is currently still trying to work their way out of the EU, British CBD regulation has still modelled itself on these EU regulations to try and put the reins on sky-rocketing CBD sales.
While this retroactive step towards legitimizing regulation has created a troublesome legal grey area for countries across the EU, Bulgarian regulation seems to have circumvented this classification by selling certain CBD products as “traditional foods”.
In a statement made to Forbes, a Kannaway representative claimed that this is the first Free Sale Certificate that has been granted for CBD products in an EU member state, stating “We can not find news of any other country in the EU issuing a Free Certificate of Sale for CBD,”.
CBD Boosts Economic Growth
According to Forbes, this certification comes after representatives from Kannaway met with Bulgarian government officials to discuss CBD and its significant potential for boosting economic growth.
While many EU member states are likely to follow guidelines set forward by the European Commission, they are not legally bound to follow these regulations. As such, individual countries are free to develop their own regulations around CBD in response to EU guidelines – however many countries have instead turned to a hasty, all-out ban on CBD products.
As sales of CBD products only seem to grow despite tightening EU regulations, other EU member states are likely to be watching closely to see how Bulgaria’s trailblazing certification plays out on the open market.